GIF image of book spine.
"The Philosophy of Humanism"
by Corliss Lamont

Corliss Lamont was a prolific writer. In his lifetime he authored, co-authored, and edited 22 books, wrote 29 pamphlets in what was known as the "Basic Pamphlets" series, and had literally hundreds of "Letters to the Editor" published in newspapers throughout the United States. A sample of these letters can be found today, preserved for posterity, on The New York Times on the Web.

His most famous, and by far most popular work, was a full-length book originally titled Humanism as a Philosophy, first published in 1949, and since translated into several languages. Over the years he revised the book six times, the last edition coming out in 1990, when he was 88 years of age. The book is considered to be the standard text on the subject of Humanism. The New York Times called it "Both readable and persuasive."

The following is taken from the 'Foreword to the Eighth Edition', by Beth K. Lamont:

It is appropriate for a philosophy that breaks the shackles of oppressive orthodoxy to be written in a language that is brave enough to shrug off these same shackles. In light of this liberation, feminists and many Humanists have pointed out the need for an eighth edition of The Philosophy of Humanism.

Until late into the twentieth century standards for scholarly works have required the use of a form of English that perpetuates a solely masculine orientation. This paternalistic tradition is still staunchly defended even by some women who otherwise consider themselves liberated, saying the matter of language is trivial and that of course it is understood that the word man means woman as well! To this assertion we answer, NONSENSE! Language influences thought. The word man brings to mind a male figure; the word human brings to mind an assortment of figures. The continuing struggles for equal rights and for social and economic justice make perfectly clear that even our cherished and exalted ideal about all men being created equal meant white, male land-owners and no one else!

When one's language consciousness has been raised, there's no going back to a previous innocence. Offensive and arrogant terms leap off the page and assault the senses. Likewise, when one's Humanist consciousness has been raised, there's no going back.

The original gender-free manuscript for the Eighth Edition was prepared for use in a course on Humanism taught by Beverley Earles at Mead Theological Seminary in 1992.

Here is a little vignette regarding this Eighth Edition, taken from the 'Introduction to the Eighth Edition', by Beverley Earles and Beth K. Lamont:

Knowing Corliss Lamont to be a strong champion of equality of the sexes, we appealed to him for his approval of a gender-free version of The Philosophy of Humanism. He resisted, saying, "Everyone knows that man includes woman." We read to him almost a whole chapter replacing all masculine references with woman, she, womankind, and so on. He listened intently with furrowed brow, looking more grim than usual, but his laughing eyes gave him away. With his customary throat-clearing "hrumph," which always preceded an important statement, he gave us his gracious approval, thus:

"Well, it's not written in stone, you know. The Philosophy of Humanism is intended to be a living document." Yes, thank you, dear Corliss; it will live forever!

And thus, the Eighth Edition was born!

It was published in April 1997 (Second Printing, March 2001) by Humanist Press, a division of the American Humanist Association. The print edition is ISBN 0-931779-07-3. Library of Congress Catalog Card Number is 96-77244.

The Philosophy of Humanism - Eighth Edition (book cover).We are pleased to offer The Philosophy of Humanism, Eighth Edition, on this website in Adobe Acrobat PDF (Portable Document Format) for viewing and printing. File size is 1,392,526 bytes.

If you wish to purchase a copy for your personal library, please visit Amazon.comGet it at

Please visit our TOC Page to see a copy of the Table of Contents for The Philosophy of Humanism, Eighth Edition.

We encourage free, not for profit, personal and educational use and distribution of the electronic text version of this copyrighted work, so feel free to print and distribute it, but please read the special copyright notice below before downloading.

Copyright Notice.The following special copyright information applies to this electronic text version of The Philosophy of Humanism, Eighth Edition:

It may be freely copied, reproduced, forwarded, and distributed for personal and educational purposes provided you copy, reproduce, forward, and distribute it in its entirety, and in accordance with the copyright notice below.


The user assumes the entire risk as to the accuracy and the use of this document. This document may be copied and distributed subject to the following conditions: 1) All text and graphics must be copied without modification and all pages must be included; 2) All copies must contain Half-Moon Foundation's copyright notice and any other notices provided therein; and 3) This document may not be distributed for profit.

By downloading this document you signify that you have read and agree to these terms and conditions.

Just click on the Acrobat PDF icon Download philos8.pdf via HTTPS. to view the file.

If you wish to save a copy of the PDF file to your local storage device for leisurely offline viewing/printing, simply right-click (Windows) or Control-click or click-and-hold (Macintosh) on the icon and in the small pop-up context menu window which appears choose "Save Target As..." or "Save Link As...". This will bring up the file save dialog wherein you can specify the filename and location on your local drive where you want to save a copy of the PDF file.

We recommend that you use Adobe (Acrobat) Reader Version 3.0 or better to view this file. If you don't currently have Adobe Reader installed on your system, you may download the latest version for free from the Adobe website using this link: Get Acrobat Reader.

The Philosophy of Humanism - Seventh Edition (book cover).
Along with the degenderized Eighth Edition, the previous 1990 Seventh Edition of The Philosophy of Humanism, although out-of-print, is also available for purchase in both new and used copies from third-party sellers on Amazon.comGet it at

 Be sure to visit the 
Corliss Lamont Bookshelf Visit the Corliss Lamont Bookshelf Web page.
 for additional information on the works of 
 Corliss Lamont. 

Back to Top.
Back to Top

Copyright © 1997-2022 by Half-Moon Foundation, Inc.
All rights reserved.

This page last revised:  January 5, 2022.

Click to validate the Hyper Text Markup Language.Click to validate the Cascading Style Sheets.

Back to Home Page. Back to Home Page